A Community Wireless Network is an collection of smaller interconnected networks that span a geographical region such as a city or neighbourhood. The primary means of connectivity between ‘nodes’ in the network is via wireless LAN radio, these days better known as ‘WiFi’.
Whilst technically similar to the internet, a CWN operates independently of the internet and provides its own critical infrastructure services such as HTTP and DNS.
Through the use of specialised routing software, the network is made resilient to failures and multiple backup paths can be created between each node.
The Air-Stream Network is comprised of hundreds of computers and networking devices that are supplied, configured, and maintained by members of the community just like yourself.
This means that we as a community are able to decide how the network should operate, where the resources should be focused, and what kind of things we can do.
By shifting the control of the infrastructure into the hands of the community we are finding new and creative ways to make low-cost communications systems that have long-term benefits for all.
Air-Stream holds a number of in-person events throughout the year, from information sessions, to training, and fundraisers.
Monthly member meetings are a great way to catch up on the latest happenings around the network, meet other members of the community and share your experiences. We also have some great guest speaker presentations, a door prize and other fun activities. Check out upcoming meetings here.
A regular social fundraising event for a bit of computer gaming, friendly competition, and to promote the presence of the Air Stream Wireless Community around Adelaide. Find out more about ASLAN here.
You might stumble upon an Air-Stream access point when using a mobile device around Adelaide, or through discussion with other interested members of the community. Discuss your interest at a meeting or on IRC with other members. Use planning tools such as the NodeDB to assess the viability of a connection from a given location.
A site survey performed from your location is essential to reveal potential access points signals that you can see. Ask around if you need help, many members have site survey equipment that can be borrowed, or they very well might offer to pay you a visit and lend a hand.
When a suitable access point is located, a WiFi module is mounted on an appropriate elevated structure at your premises and fine tuned to provide the best connection. Followed up with a small amount of data cabling to your home router and you will be online in no time.
Our members enjoy a range of benefits thanks to the generosity of our sponsors. From online services to hardware discounts, we are always interested in finding synergies with local businesses.
If you have something you would like to offer, please let us know!